Category Archives: Landmarks

Built to Last!

The Steele Building (1908) Southwest Corner of 6th and Market St. Architect: Edmond Blachmann Architectural Style: Victorian Commercial The Steele Building or Block is significant not only because of its early development, but because of the notable personalities associated with the financing and construction on this parcel. There is evidence that a small wooden structure […]

From Corpses to Cantina

The Sun Café 421 Market Street  1873-1883 The early history of Lot A/Block 082/95, where the Sun Cafe sits, is a most circuitous one. On March 18,1869, Alonzo Horton sold the property to Mary C. Smith, who promptly sold it to E.P.Figg, who returned it to Mrs. Smith, who resold it to Mr. Horton. Mr. […]

Reuben the Guide and his Historic Haunts

Douglas Hotel, Clermont/Coast Hotel, Ideal Hotel & the Crossroads, 1887-1985 As lead tour guide and historian for the Davis-Horton House Museum, I often wondered how the tour guide business got started. I inadvertently found the answer, while researching something entirely different. Not all Gaslamp “Landmarks” are buildings! San Diego’s first tour guide, known from coast […]

From Hotel to Hospital to Hotel

The Grand Pacific Hotel 1887 SW Corner of 5th and J Street Architects : Clemments and Stannard Architecture: Victorian On June 15, 1850, the City of San Diego Pueblo Lot 1156, all portions, was sold to Thomas Sweeney, Thomas Matsell, Daniel P. Clark and Joseph T. Sweet. They were respectively, a one-armed U.S. Army officer,  […]

The Golden West, 1913

720 Fourth Avenue, northwest corner of G Street Architect :   John Lloyd Wright Prairie Style of Architecture- Modern As one strolls through the Gaslamp, most notice that although each building has its own unique characteristics, most are basically what can be termed “Victorian.”  The exception is the Golden West Hotel.  It is devoid of the ornate […]

Everybody Loves a Lover……

Keating Building, 1890 Architects:  Reid Brothers Architectual Style: Romanesque Revival Everybody loves a good love story, and San Diego is no exception.  The Keating building, a lovely Romanesque Revival gem on the northwest corner of 5th and F St., boasts two. George and Fannie Keating arrived in San Diego from Kansas in 1886.  As Mr. […]